FlySafair will temporarily close all business operations following the government’s announcement of a 21-day lockdown in South Africa.
The lockdown is aimed at stopping the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus in the country.
“By taking this decision, FlySafair has joined a number of other local airlines and businesses who have taken this stance and have done so in solidarity by putting South Africa’s health and public interest first,” said the company.
“The airline will operate its final flights before the shutdown comes into effect on Wednesday 25 March 2020 and aims to resume operations on the morning of 20 April 2020 following a lifting of the lockdown.”
The government has stated the lockdown will start at 23:59 on Thursday 26 March.
Flying every day since 2014
“We started FlySafair on 16 October 2014 and have flown every day since, we never envisaged a circumstance that would have to halt operations,” said Kirby Gordon, Chief Marketing Officer at FlySafair.
“Globally, we are in unprecedented times and we believe that the decision taken by our president is the correct one.”
Customers who have flights booked during this lockdown period can make penalty-free changes to alternative dates, either before or after the lockdown, said the company.
“Customers seeking refunds must exchange their reservations to a flight voucher. All eligible bookings will then later be assessed to and converted to cash if requested. These processes can all be done on the FlySafair website,” said the company.
“We have a large number of customers to assist, and very limited time to do so before the lockdown commences, so our focus at this point is to build tools and provide guidance that will allow customers to self-service. We encourage passengers to monitor our website for regular updates.”
Its ticket sales desks, call centre, WhatsApp channel, and social media accounts will also be closed during the lockdown.
FlySafair staff will be on leave during the period in question, it concluded.